The way you look when you are asleep or the way sleep looks at you, you are coming out of the water. And the water is where you the pieces of you come together before you are born afraid.
People aren’t born afraid. They’re made by fear. Every time you told her to put her crayons away, to put the purple crayon away because you’ve never heard of an indigo-marred physiognomy, marred strokes of what looks so sweet to the one who has has not yet formed fear.
Out of ocean graves she is given a half chance to live. She’s dead. She’s not dead. She is the place where death becomes the opening of something holy in its dismemberment. Who was meant to die but instead slept prostrate on the sidewalk in the city while the city was awake
and woke while the city slept —
ambulatory nights alone, crawling toward the moon. We might be saved this way, by dint of our longing to be free and in doing so, freeing what we touch. My slipped disc is the price of being free and by free I mean, not in search of money. Every free person knows they are walking into their grave. But time doesn’t need us. The forest doesn’t need us, the crown needs a head but it need not be yours. You haunt the forest of spines the way the spine haunts you: in the back, delaying transmission to the legs. You become more than one when your body is in revolt because your body becomes a hostile foreigner. You become three, the one who is not away. The body that fights itself on your behalf.
The oceans gives talismans to the sailors it loves - it is you. You’ll be the one to build the world never meant for you, you’ll build a word out of scraps of hair, sugar, liquified flesh. And every pebble you palmed and could not forget.
The legend is the language that left when you needed it most, and now you are on your way to the sky by way of the mouth.
Nocturnal girl has lost her itinerant lover…the wind. She’ll come back for me. They’ll come back for me. One day they’ll all come back for me. She lost her teeth on the way to being born. She’s under the claw of the creatures she made, talons that lift her by the hair and drop her on an island shaped like your face. All those nights alone, doodling in words to keep herself warm.
8 years old. There was so much time to be famous. More to get old. What’s old? You don’t know old.
After the body there’s the birth of your shadow in a pedal as large and potent as earth itself. The insane girls will miss the way you waltz toward death. Bodies from the ground there are so many bodies coming up from the ground. It’s your secret. Being alive is your secret and secrets always ruin the ones who keep them. We sleep on the shore like ruined people braiding out dream into a single knot. Bound, when you’re bound to me I can no longer be afraid of myself but afraid, of you.
I come at the poem recklessly. Some peculiar way to be a sentence in the letting go. Peregrinations of the sentence that outruns you. It wakes up where you left off when you fell asleep.
She’s waiting for her hour.
She’s waiting for the moment the cottonwood seeds blow across the sky,
The seeds are her signal.
Here on earth she waits for the moment the sea is ready to take her back.
They’re a pair of old dykes who were always supposed to be together
I had a dream and right when I woke up I didn’t know if it happened
The world happens.
We could be happy, post apocalypse, just us - surviving ourselves with laughter while everyone else is afraid
The way I am in the world is a game, some days I’m wherever the words put me,
Me? I had a case of not being able to get up. The staircases grew around. I grew fearful of what I knew I could not mount. I could not get up. I was covered in windows whispering - get up - whipping me, the house tried to whip me awake…for some privacy. Are you worried about your words? Hey do, Ernst. They’ll do wrist they wish. The words will do what they wish to what you don’t understand. The way a rose falls asleep on the moon, or the amount of blood you lose before dying.
Seeds blown across her window became the secret of how to begin
She held coins in her pockets all winter
Waiting for the song to spill out of the forest
For the forest was the father that left her,
And the ocean was mother’s love so wide it could drown her
I return to where I go, not knowing where I am
Or who I am
But I know
My people were not born afraid
What creature are you of the night of bird and water and arboreal eyes, liminal limbs. You are the truth of waiting. it closes not.
What creature comes, leaves…the crests ego scone. The creature who comes, leaves. Trampled sea-ling with alien eyes.
What creatures become when out of water. The kind of person who falls asleep on the sidewalk dreaming the waves of her youth.
When the creature comes we won’t have her. She’s here, halving herself. She’s made more of herself just to spite us.
We all exist
But some of us exist less,
Exist for our right to fall asleep alone
We are of a nation of unreported rates of alien rape but rates of sightings in the sky abound.
Between ocean and sky—there’s so much space. Space space space
They say, you’re too sky for water and too wet for heaven.
There’s no crime like the crime of being liminal.
I understand the relationship between gunfire and rain
When it fires, someone rains
And the hot air turns cold, pauses in search of a rapprochement
Beyond sky there is a way to leave me out of this
I am the child saint who smells of cut grass and myrrh
I am what is holy about my incurability
My way of bending into the blue fire, holding the book
In every door of my body there is a violent egg
Powdered enough to receive the men of the streets
The war is in the tempo you force on me with your cesurae
Your face is in every part of my body
I grow and grow and grow and and grown by the pieces of myself cut off and buried in the ground.
God will harvest me crush me dead I don’t care, because I was born dead but just silver or alive enough to have a mouth for god’s rood
The dead girl has her own alphabet made of funeral flowers
The way she wears her rose crown, with shame…
Some lived the sea path and did not miss touching…
Let me go to sleep. The world won’t let me go to sleep but won’t let me be awake. Liminal liminal liminal
One by one, I’m not free. My fear is bottomless, takes away my blossom language
Could being alive be called a curse? It was a curse to be alive. I made my splendor while everyone slept. It was my secret.